Mission for Integrated Development of Horticulture
Mission for Integrated Development of Horticulture
The Mission for Integrated Development of Horticulture (MIDH) is a centrally sponsored scheme for development of the horticultural sector. The said sector includes fruits, vegetables, root & tuber crops, mushrooms, spices, flowers, aromatic plants, coconut, cashew, cocoa and bamboo. The Government of India (GOI) contributes 85% of the total estimate for developmental programmes in every state and only a share of 15% is provided by the State Government. However, GOI contributes 100% of the estimated amount to the North Eastern and the Himalayan States. Let us take a closer look at Mission for Integrated Development of Horticulture.
- Support holistic growth of the horticulture sector by conducting research, technology promotion, extension, post-harvest management, processing and marketing of every State/region and its diverse agro-climatic elements.
- Restore aggregation of farmers into farmer groups like Farmer Producer Organisations (FPOs)/Farmer Interest Groups (FIGs) and Farmer Producer Companies (FPCs) to develop economy and scope.
- Enhance horticulture production, the income of farmers and strengthen nutritional security.
- Upgrade productivity in terms of quality germplasm, planting material and water use efficiency via Micro Irrigation.
- Promote skill development and create employment generation opportunities for rural youth in post-harvest management and horticulture.
In order to achieve the above-mentioned objectives, the mission adopts the following strategy:
- Adoption of the end-to-end approach that involves pre-production, production, post-harvest management, processing and marketing to ensure appropriate returns to growers/producers.
- Promoting Research and Development (R&D) technologies for processing, cultivation, production, post-harvest management with particular focus on cold chain infrastructure to extend the shelf life of perishables.
- Increase productivity in terms of:
- Diversification from traditional crops to plantations, vineyards, flowers, vegetable gardens, orchards, bamboo plantations.
- Extension of required technology to farmers for high-tech horticulture, including precision farming and protected cultivation.
- Increase of acreage of orchards and plantation crops in regions where the total agricultural area under horticulture is below 50%.
- Develop post-harvest management, marketing infrastructure and processing value addition.
- Adopt a coordinated approach and build partnership, convergence and synergy among R&D, processing and marketing agencies in public and private sectors at the national, regional, state and sub-state levels.
- Promote FPOs and join hands with Market Aggregators (MAs) and Financial Institutions (FIs) to support adequate returns to farmers.
- Assist capacity-building and Human Resource Development at all levels, considering a change in syllabus and curriculum of graduate courses at colleges, universities ITIs, polytechnics etc.
Fund Flow Mechanism
The State Government releases funds to the SHMs/State Level Implementing Agencies, who in turn make funds available to DMC/District Implementing Agencies. Efforts to make online payments to all Implementing Agencies would be ensured. Implementing agencies are mandated to undertake activities within the funds offered by the GOI. No claims of pending liabilities to expenditure and released funds would be entertained by DAC.
Technologies such as Remote Sensing, Information Communication Technology (ICT) and Geographic Information System are commonly used technologies for planning and monitoring. This can be used for identification of sites for creating infrastructure facilities for post-harvest management, market and production forecasts.
Research and Development
Programmes on horticulture and bamboo R&D is based on applied research in the following areas:
- Seed and Planting material
- Technology standardisation
- Technology acquisition
- Imparting training and Front Line Demonstration in a project mode
R&D on horticulture crops will be confined to the North East and the Himalayan States; R&D on bamboo will be on a pan India basis.
Production and Productivity Improvement
The mission focuses on both production and productivity through adoption of improved and appropriate technologies to ensuring quality, genetic upgradation of all horticultural crops and assessing challenges of climate change. Efforts would be taken to establish and upgrade nurseries and TC units. This will be supplemented through plantation development programmes by adding new areas under improved varieties to meet market demand.
Activities like the construction of greenhouses, shade net house, plastic mulching and plastic tunnels, anti bird/hail nets are promoted by the mission. Preference shall be given to locally available materials to reduce the construction costs of such structures.
Organic farming in horticulture is promoted for environmental and economic benefits by the adoption of organic farming techniques along with its certification. Organic certification is guided by service providers and certification agencies, authorised by APEDA.
Good Agriculture Practices (GAP)
GAP certification is introduced to encourage farmers to adopt good agricultural practices with global GAP so that farmers can get a better price for their produce in the domestic and international market. Assistance at the rate of 50% of the cost for a maximum area of 4 hectares is offered to each beneficiary.
Centre of Excellence for Horticulture
Centres of Excellence is set up for different horticultural products that serve as a demonstration and training centre and a source for planting material and vegetable seedlings under protected cultivation.
Horticulture mechanisation is aimed to increase farm efficiency and decrease the labour of the farm workforce. Assistance here will be provided for activities like procurement of power operated machines and tools. Moreover, assistance will be provided for grower associations, farmer groups, SHGs, women farmer groups with at least 10 members, etc. who are engaged in the cultivation of Horticulture crops, if 60% of the cost of machines and tools is borne by these groups.
Processing and Value Addition
Processing of horticultural produce and adding value is a vital activity. The primary/minimal processing units would be promoted under NHM, while large scale processing units is supported by the Ministry of Food Processing Industries (MFPI). The NHM takes up projects on product promotion, market information and market intelligence services for horticultural crops.